SBE introduces more 7 a.m. classes for a first-year accounting course
Some first-years in the business program might have to wake up extremely early come September, but at least they don’t have to go to class on a Saturday.
As a result of a move by the school of business and economics (SBE) at Wilfrid Laurier University, “Intro to Financial Accounting,” or BU 127, will now be offered to first-years twice a week at 7 a.m.
The other choice was on Saturdays, but time slots have since received little interest from first-year students when registering for their courses.
“Intro to Financial Accounting” was originally only offered as a second-year course with the course code of BU 227.
Since first-year students from 2012-13 didn’t have the opportunity to take BU 127, they will be taking the last set of BU 227 in 2013-14. The result was a double cohort of students in this introductory accounting course for this fall.
“We are not happy with this solution and I don’t like the idea at all, but we couldn’t find any place to put these students,” explained Kim Morouney, the associate dean of business: academic programs at Laurier. “We’re hoping that people can get through it one time, it’s a big shock to faculty too.”
She added, “Our students need to have accounting in first-year and there’s no way to make this change without a double cohort.”
According to Morouney, the move of BU 227 to BU 127 happened because many other business schools at Canadian universities have accounting classes in first-year. Data from the Career Centre at
Laurier as well as the SBE faculty indicated that employers for co-op prefer the students to have accounting in first-year.
“There were lots of pressures pushing us to the restructuring, but it’s very difficult to do, and it’s only gotten more difficult as our program has gotten bigger,” continued Morouney. “Over the years, most business programs have gradually begun to put accounting in first-year. Not everyone, but we felt that the ones that did, their students were getting a slight edge over our students [in co-op placements].”
“And we want our students to have the edge,” she said.
Saturday classes for BU 127, due to the low number of students registering for that time slot, are going to be cancelled and more 7 a.m. classes will be opened. Morouney noted that most of the complaints about these changes were directed at the Saturday classes instead of the 7 a.m. ones.
“It’s very early, there’s no doubt that some students are going to arrive late and sleep in and those types of things,” said James Moore, a business professor from Brock University who is moving to Laurier in July as well as teaching one of these classes in the fall.
“We’re really facing a space crunch in universities, and some of these classes will have to be offered at that time of the day. Not every student functions in that particular way, but there are some who are in fact morning people,” he added.
Moore anticipates that attendance will be an issue for these 7 a.m. classes, but most materials will be available online for students who can’t make it to each class.
In addressing the students about this change, Morouney admitted that the faculty could’ve done a better job at doing so.
Once the move is completed, Morouney noted that there won’t be a double cohort for “Intro to Accounting” in 2014-15, but double cohorts – which may mean more 7 a.m. classes before the Global Innovation Exchange building is completed in 2015 – will remain a possibility for the program in the near future for other classes.